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Genesis 43

43
Joseph’s Brothers Return with Benjamin
1Now the famine was #Gen. 41:54, 57; 42:5; 45:6, 11severe in the land. 2And it came to pass, when they had eaten up the grain which they had brought from Egypt, that their father said to them, “Go #Gen. 42:2; 44:25back, buy us a little food.”
3But Judah spoke to him, saying, “The man solemnly warned us, saying, ‘You shall not see my face unless your #Gen. 42:20; 43:5; 44:23brother is with you.’ 4If you send our brother with us, we will go down and buy you food. 5But if you will not send him, we will not go down; for the man said to us, ‘You shall not see my face unless your brother is with you.’ ”
6And Israel said, “Why did you deal so wrongfully with me as to tell the man whether you had still another brother?”
7But they said, “The man asked us pointedly about ourselves and our family, saying, ‘Is your father still alive? Have you another brother?’ And we told him according to these words. Could we possibly have known that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down’?”
8Then Judah said to Israel his father, “Send the lad with me, and we will arise and go, that we may #Gen. 42:2; 47:19live and not die, both we and you and also our little ones. 9I myself will be surety for him; from my hand you shall require him. #Gen. 42:37; 44:32; Philem. 18, 19If I do not bring him back to you and set him before you, then let me bear the blame forever. 10For if we had not lingered, surely by now we would have returned this second time.”
11And their father Israel said to them, “If it must be so, then do this: Take some of the best fruits of the land in your vessels and #Gen. 32:20; 33:10; 43:25, 26; (Prov. 18:16)carry down a present for the man—a little #Gen. 37:25; Jer. 8:22; Ezek. 27:17balm and a little honey, spices and myrrh, pistachio nuts and almonds. 12Take double money in your hand, and take back in your hand the money #Gen. 42:25, 35; 43:21, 22that was returned in the mouth of your sacks; perhaps it was an oversight. 13Take your brother also, and arise, go back to the man. 14And may God #Gen. 17:1; 28:3; 35:11; 48:3Almighty #Gen. 39:21; Ps. 106:46give you mercy before the man, that he may release your other brother and Benjamin. #Gen. 42:36; Esth. 4:16If I am bereaved, I am bereaved!”
15So the men took that present and Benjamin, and they took double money in their hand, and arose and went #Gen. 39:1; 46:3, 6down to Egypt; and they stood before Joseph. 16When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the #Gen. 24:2; 39:4; 44:1steward of his house, “Take these men to my home, and slaughter an animal and make ready; for these men will dine with me at noon.” 17Then the man did as Joseph ordered, and the man brought the men into Joseph’s house.
18Now the men were #Gen. 42:28afraid because they were brought into Joseph’s house; and they said, “It is because of the money, which was returned in our sacks the first time, that we are brought in, so that he may make a case against us and seize us, to take us as slaves with our donkeys.”
19When they drew near to the steward of Joseph’s house, they talked with him at the door of the house, 20and said, “O sir, #Gen. 42:3, 10we indeed came down the first time to buy food; 21but #Gen. 42:27, 35it happened, when we came to the encampment, that we opened our sacks, and there, each man’s money was in the mouth of his sack, our money in full weight; so we have brought it back in our hand. 22And we have brought down other money in our hands to buy food. We do not know who put our money in our sacks.”
23But he said, “Peace be with you, do not be afraid. Your God and the God of your father has given you treasure in your sacks; I had your money.” Then he brought #Gen. 42:24Simeon out to them.
24So the man brought the men into Joseph’s house and #Gen. 18:4; 19:2; 24:32gave them water, and they washed their feet; and he gave their donkeys feed. 25Then they made the present ready for Joseph’s coming at noon, for they heard that they would eat bread there.
26And when Joseph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand into the house, and #Gen. 37:7, 10; 42:6; 44:14bowed down before him to the earth. 27Then he asked them about their well-being, and said, “Is your father well, the old man #Gen. 29:6; 42:11, 13; 43:7; 45:3; 2 Kin. 4:26of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?”
28And they answered, “Your servant our father is in good health; he is still alive.” #Gen. 37:7, 10And they bowed their heads down and prostrated themselves.
29Then he lifted his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, #Gen. 35:17, 18his mother’s son, and said, “Is this your younger brother #Gen. 42:13of whom you spoke to me?” And he said, “God be gracious to you, my son.” 30Now #1 Kin. 3:26his heart yearned for his brother; so Joseph made haste and sought somewhere to weep. And he went into his chamber and #Gen. 42:24; 45:2, 14, 15; 46:29wept there. 31Then he washed his face and came out; and he restrained himself, and said, “Serve the #Gen. 43:25bread.”
32So they set him a place by himself, and them by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves; because the Egyptians could not eat food with the #Gen. 41:12; Ex. 1:15Hebrews, for that is #Gen. 46:34; Ex. 8:26an abomination to the Egyptians. 33And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his #Gen. 27:36; 42:7; Deut. 21:16, 17birthright and the youngest according to his youth; and the men looked in astonishment at one another. 34Then he took servings to them from before him, but Benjamin’s serving was #Gen. 35:24; 45:22five times as much as any of theirs. So they drank and were merry with him.
43
The Return to Egypt
1Now the famine was very severe in the land [of Canaan]. 2And it happened that when the families of Jacob’s sons had finished eating [all of] the grain which they had brought from Egypt, their father said to them, “Go again, buy us a little food.” 3But Judah said to him, “The man [representing Pharaoh] solemnly and sternly warned us, saying, ‘You will not see my face [again] unless your brother is with you.’ 4If you will send our brother with us, we will go down [to Egypt] and buy you food. 5But if you will not send him, we will not go down there; for the man said to us, ‘You will not see my face unless your brother is with you.’ ” 6And Israel (Jacob) said, “Why did you treat me so badly by telling the man that you had another brother?” 7And they said, “The man asked us straightforward questions about ourselves and our relatives. He said, ‘Is your father still alive? Have you another brother?’ And we #Lit told him upon the mouth of these words.answered him accordingly. How could we possibly know that he would say, ‘Bring your brother down [here to Egypt]’? ” 8Judah said to Israel his father, “Send the young man with me and we will get up and go [buy food], so that we may live and not die [of starvation], we as well as you and our little ones. 9I will be security (a guarantee) for him; #Lit from my hand you shall require him.you may hold me [personally] responsible for him. If I do not bring him [back] to you and place him [safely] before you, then let me bear the blame before you forever. 10For if we had not delayed like this, surely by now we would have returned the second time.”
11Then their father Israel said to them, “If it must be so, then do this; take some of the choicest products of the land in your sacks, and carry it as a present [of tribute] to the man [representing Pharaoh], a little balm and a little honey, aromatic spices or gum, resin, pistachio nuts, and almonds. 12Take double the [amount of] money with you, and take back the money that was returned in the opening of your sacks; perhaps it was an oversight. 13Take your brother [Benjamin] also, and get up, and go to the man; 14and may #Heb El Shaddai.God Almighty grant you compassion and favor before the man, so that he will release to you your other brother [Simeon] and Benjamin. And as for me, if I am bereaved of my children [Joseph, Simeon, and Benjamin], I am bereaved.” 15Then the men took the present, and they took double the [amount of] money with them, and Benjamin; then they left and went down to Egypt and stood before Joseph.
Joseph Sees Benjamin
16When Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to the steward of his house, “Bring the men into the house, and kill an animal and make [a meal] ready; for the men will dine with me at noon.” 17So the man did as Joseph said, and brought the men to Joseph’s house. 18The men were afraid, because they were brought to Joseph’s house; and [expecting the worst] they said, “It is because of the money that was returned in our sacks the first time [we came] that we are being brought in, so that he may find a reason to accuse us and assail us, and take us as slaves, and seize our donkeys.” 19So they approached the steward of Joseph’s house, and talked with him at the entrance of the house, 20and said, “Oh, my lord, we indeed came down here the first time to buy food; 21and when we arrived at the inn [after leaving here], we opened our sacks and there was each man’s money [with which he had paid for grain], in full, returned in the mouth of his sack. So we have brought it back [this time]. 22We have also brought down with us additional money to buy food; we do not know who put our money [back] in our sacks [last time].” 23But the steward [encouraged them and] said, “Peace be to you, do not be afraid; your God and the God of your father has [miraculously] given you treasure in your sacks. I [already] had your money [which you paid to us].” Then he brought Simeon out to them. 24Then the steward brought the men into Joseph’s house and gave them water, and they washed [the dust off] their feet; and he gave their donkeys feed. 25So they prepared the present [of tribute] for Joseph before his arrival at noon; for they had heard that they were to eat a meal there.
26When Joseph came home, they brought into the house to him the present [of tribute] which they had with them and bowed to the ground before him. 27He asked them about their well-being, and said, “Is your old father well, of whom you spoke? Is he still alive?” 28And they answered, “Your servant our father is in good health; he is still alive.” And they bowed down [their heads before Joseph] in respect. 29And he looked up and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s [only other] son, and said, “Is this your youngest brother, of whom you spoke to me?” And Joseph said, “God be gracious to you and show you favor, my son.” 30Then Joseph hurried out [of the room] because his heart was deeply touched over his brother, and he sought privacy to weep; so he entered his chamber and wept there. 31Then he washed his face and came out, and, restraining himself, said, “Let the meal be served.” 32So the servants served Joseph by himself [in honor of his rank], and his brothers by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because [according to custom] the Egyptians could not eat food with the Hebrews, for that is #I.e. an abomination, a violation of holiness or distinction.loathsome to the Egyptians. 33Now Joseph’s brothers were seated [by the steward] before him [in the order of their birth]—the firstborn according to his birthright and the youngest according to his youth; and the men looked at one another in astonishment [because so much was known about them]. 34Joseph selected and sent portions to them from his own table, but Benjamin’s portion was five times as much as any of theirs. So they feasted and drank freely and celebrated with him.